News Release, Charles County Public Information Office
Charles County has been working with several local organizations and agencies to protect the homeless community and other vulnerable populations throughout the COVID-19 public health emergency. The Charles County Department of Emergency Services has partnered with the Health Department, Department of Social Services, Sheriff’s Office, La Plata Police Department, and Lifestyles of Maryland on a plan for care that does not involve gathering into a group or crowd and how best to prevent community spread within vulnerable populations.
“We know that our homeless population is especially at risk of community transmission of COVID-19 and faces unique challenges to ensuring quarantine and isolation if infection occurs,” stated Commissioner President Reuben B. Collins, II, Esq. “That’s why the county has taken proactive measures to ensure that we are providing direct outreach and assistance to keep them healthy and house them when necessary.”
An agreement is underway to partner with Lifestyles of Maryland to provide sanitation stations that will be delivered to homeless encampments. The stations will provide portable toilets and handwashing sinks to support hygiene and prevent community spread of COVID-19. A plan has also been put in place to provide shelter to those who become ill and test positive for COVID-19, so they can be safely quarantined until they recover.
Commissioner President Collins stated that “These strategies are in place to ensure the health, welfare, and safety of homeless individuals who are at higher risk due to their circumstances during this extraordinary time.”